Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Here comes the sun

Photo: Clive Simpson

THE vibrant colour and noise of summer are absent on this visceral, unkind day at the English seaside.

It started with unrequited optimism, a slip of sunshine at dawn which quickly retreated into murky fog and cold, a typically dour and miserly January day enveloped in clinging mist.

There is no wind, just chill, and the grey sea is eerily serene and flat for the time of year, merging without definition into the distant grey shoreline.

We are standing on a narrow, exposed north-facing balcony of the the Rocket House Cafe, an oddly named building whose shape and design is more maritime than space launch pad.

A rusty tractor hauls two small fishing boats off the beach just below us onto a steep jetty. They are safe now, well above the concrete sea wall which snakes away in gritty grey tones behind them.

It carries the eye towards Cromer’s famous seaside pier with its quaint, rusty-roofed theatre in front of a modern, wood constructed lifeboat house which seems to hang on the very edge of the North Sea.

Warmth and light from inside the busy cafe beckon. The chatter is comforting and masks the bleakness of a seaside town in winter, as we hold closely our memories of summer and look forward to sunny days.

Rocket House Cafe

Photo: Clive Simpson


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